Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School

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About the Curriculum

The Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School is highly acclaimed for its outstanding academic results. In addition, we encourage pupils to develop their own interests and achieve far more than just examination success.

The many opportunities to excel, both within and beyond the classroom, provide an environment in which every individual can develop his talents to the full.

The School regards the regular performance of homework as being of the first importance and pupils adhere to a daily homework schedule.

More information about the National Curriculum can be found here:


Key Stage 3

The School introduced a two year key stage three curriculum in September 2015. Boys will study a wide and varied repertoire of subjects, giving them a solid grounding in many areas. All talents and interests are catered for as are the widely varied abilities of our pupils. 

Boys are streamed according to ability in every subject. Class sizes vary according to the ability of the boys with the less able taught in smaller groups. Practical subjects (Art, Music and Design Technology) are taught in smaller classes to allow for the individual attention these subjects require.

All pupils study Religious Education and the core and foundation subjects of the National Curriculum:

•    English
•    Mathematics
•    Science
•    Art
•    Citizenship
•    Design Technology
•    French
•    Geography
•    History
•    Computer Science
•    Latin
•    Music
•    Personal, Social and Health Education
•    Physical Education 

Key Stage 4

 As boys move up the School they have the opportunity to focus on the subjects which appeal to them most while also developing their knowledge and understanding of the core curriculum essential to all. 

During their GCSE years all boys study the following subjects:

  • Religious Education
  • English Language
  • English Literature
  • Mathematics
  • Combined Science
  • Games
  • Citizenship
  • Work Related Learning

In addition, they may also choose from the following courses:

  • Art
  • Business
  • Classical Civilisation
  • Computer Science
  • Design Technology
  • Drama
  • Engineering 
  • French
  • General Studies
  • Geography
  • Greek (only available to those studying Latin) 
  • History
  • Latin
  • Music
  • Physical Education (GCSE)
  • Sociology
  • Spanish

Triple Science (i.e. Biology, Chemistry and Physics) is available to the most able pupils.

For our GSCE Revision Resources click here. This is a useful resource for parents and pupils.


Of its very nature the Sixth Form is the crowning achievement in a school such as the Vaughan.

All pupils take Religious Education and Liberal Studies. Physical Education and Games are available, though not compulsory, in the Sixth Form. Opportunities are provided for Community Service and many other activities.

We offer a wide choice of subjects at AS and A Level:

  • Art
  • Biology
  • BTEC Level 3 Business
  • Business
  • Chemistry
  • Classical Civilisation
  • Computer Science
  • Design Technology
  • Economics
  • English
  • French
  • Further Mathematics
  • Geography
  • History
  • Latin
  • Mathematics
  • Music (Pre-U Course)
  • Music Technology
  • Philosophy
  • Physics
  • Politics
  • Psychology
  • Religious Studies
  • Sociology
  • Spanish

Gifted & Talented

The progress of pupils in the Gifted and Talented cohort of the Vaughan is constantly reviewed, allowing us to cater for their needs.  This is done primarily by the design of our curriculum, which provides intrinsic challenge, for example, Latin is provided for the top two sets at Key Stage 3 and Greek is offered at GCSE to stretch those who study Latin, while the most able embark on GCSE courses in the separate disciplines of Biology, Chemistry and Physics.  In addition to this, our sporting and music provision enables pupils talented in these areas to nurture and develop their abilities.  In Music, for example, our Gifted and Talented players and vocalists have access to a dozen musical ensembles with the chance to play alongside professionals in major orchestral and choral works at London’s great venues (Cadogan Hall, St James Spanish Place, St John’s Smith Square) and in locations around the world, with recent trips including Madrid, Washington, Hong Kong and Poland.


You can find all the information you need regarding how we make the curriculum accessible for SEND pupils here.